Engineering Production Workers perform a range of production process tasks to refine and treat metals and mineral ore, fire ceramics, and operate plant to produce and finish metal products such as rods, tubing and structural shapes, and moulds for casting.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed to work in this job. Even with a qualification, sometimes experience or on-the-job training is necessary. Registration or licensing is required.

Tasks

  • interpreting engineering production drawings
  • setting up, operating and adjusting production plant to shape metal stock and castings and cut sheet metal
  • operating welding and electroplating plant
  • operating furnaces and quenching plant to smelt and change the structure of metals
  • using kilns and ovens to fire ceramics
  • processing mineral ore and operating metal rolling plant
  • casting molten metal and operating plant to draw metal wire through dies
  • operating computer-controlled production plant

Job Titles

  • Engineering Production Worker
  • Engineering Production Worker

    Specialisations: Alumina Refinery Operator, Arc Welder, Brake Press Operator, Computer Numeric Control Machine Operator, Foundry Operator, Furnace Operator (Metals), Kiln Operator (Metals), Metal Rolling Mill Operator, Sheetmetal Worker (Second Class), Tool Setter, Turret Punch Operator

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    $1,122 Before Tax
  • Future Growth

    decline
  • Skill Level

    Certificate II or III
  • Employment Size

    17,300
  • Unemployment

    above average
  • Male Share

    91.8%
  • Female Share

    8.2%
  • Full-Time Share

    95.6%

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This is a medium sized occupation employing 17,300 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has fallen.
A fall in the number of jobs is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create between 5,001 and 10,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • Engineering Production Systems Workers work in most parts of Australia.
  • They mainly work in: Manufacturing; Construction; and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.
  • Almost all work full-time. Full-time workers, on average, work 39.4 hours per week (compared to the all jobs average of 40 hours).
  • Average earnings for full-time workers are around $1,122 per week (similar to the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • The average age is 42 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years) and around 5 in 10 workers are aged 45 years or older.
  • More than 9 in 10 workers are male.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was above average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearNumber of Workers
200531500
200632200
200732000
200832000
200925000
201023400
201126400
201222600
201322300
201417000
201517300
202014400

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Jobs Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsEngineering Production Systems WorkersAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings11221230

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Hours actually worked by people who usually work full-time, and share of employment by full-time and part-time status, for this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryEngineering Production Systems WorkersAll Jobs Average
Full-time95.668.4
Part-time4.431.6
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)39.440.0

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Manufacturing81.6
Construction9.6
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services1.7
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing1.4
Other Industries5.7

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateEngineering Production Systems WorkersAll Jobs Average
NSW22.431.8
VIC32.325.5
QLD22.019.8
SA8.66.8
WA11.411.2
TAS2.22.0
NT1.01.1
ACT0.01.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketEngineering Production Systems WorkersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-192.1-5.45.4
20-245.1-9.99.9
25-3422.6-23.423.4
35-4424.8-21.721.7
45-5430.9-21.121.1
55-5910.0-8.78.7
60-644.5-5.95.9
65 and Over0.0-3.83.8

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Male and female share of employment in this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryEngineering Production Systems WorkersCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males91.8Males53.6
Females8.2Females46.4

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed to work in this job. Even with a qualification, sometimes experience or on-the-job training is necessary. Registration or licensing is required.

If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

  • myfuture (login required) and the Good Education Group provide information about courses at all levels.
  • My Skills is the national directory of Vocational Education and Training (VET) and provides information about nationally recognised training and training providers that deliver it.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Engineering Production Systems Workers have good interpersonal skills, can communicate well in a team and have a strong work ethic.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Production and Processing

    83% Important

    Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.

  2. Mathematics

    73% Important

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  3. Education and Training

    72% Important

    Teaching and course design.

  4. Mechanical

    70% Important

    Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

  5. Engineering and Technology

    65% Important

    Use engineering science and technology to design and produce goods and services.

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Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Controlling Machines and Processes

    84% Important

    Operate machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).

  2. Getting Information

    84% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  3. Handling and Moving Objects

    82% Important

    Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

  4. Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Staff

    81% Important

    Giving information to supervisors, co-workers, and staff by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

  5. Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events

    81% Important

    Comparing objects, actions, or events, looking for differences between them or changes over time.

Occupational Information Network Forging Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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